Bed and Bathroom Safety Tips for Kids & Adults
Your home should be an oasis of safety, security and happy memories for you and your family. However, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly nine million children a year are seen in emergency rooms for injuries incurred at home — and more than 9,000 die because of those injuries.
While it’s difficult to eliminate all hazards in your home, there are steps you can take to make your home safer for children.
- Make sure all painted furniture is from 1978 or later, to avoid exposure to lead paint.
- Ensure crib slats are less than 2-3/8 inches apart.
- Make certain crib headboards and footboards are free of large cut-outs.
- Only use a crib mattress that fits snugly in the frame.
- Always keep crib side rails up.
- Keep soft pillows or large stuffed animals out of cribs.
- Remove strings or ribbons from hanging mobiles, crib toys and crib bumpers to eliminate choking hazards.
- Secure window blind and curtain cords with child-safety cord clips.
- Secure furniture to walls to prevent a tip over.
- Install dampening hinges on toy chests.
- Install window guards on windows that aren’t an emergency exit.
- Keep night lights from touching any fabric such as bedspreads or curtains.
- Have your child wear flame-retardant sleepwear.
- Remove drawstrings from your child's clothing.
- Place furniture away from sources of heat.
- Install safety plugs in unused electrical outlets.
- Cushion all sharp edges or corners on furniture or cabinets.
- Store sharp objects in a locked cabinet or drawer.
- Install childproof latches on all drawers.
- Install ground fault circuit interrupters on all electrical outlets.
- Leave toilet lids down and install a toilet-lid lock.
- Unplug hair dryers and electric razors when not in use.
- Apply nonskid strips to the bottoms of bathtubs.
- Install nonslip pads under rugs.
- Tie all window blind and curtain cords with specially designed child-safety cord clips.
- Keep medications, mouthwash, cosmetics, cleaners, etc., in a locked cabinet.
- Make sure all medicine bottles have childproof caps.
Finally, no matter what room you’re in, keep a list of emergency phone numbers (police, fire, poison control center) near every phone.
If you’re concerned about recalls, the Consumer Product Safety Commission posts warnings about dangerous products. You can also request email updates.
Every family and home is different, but this list gives you an idea of the kinds of hazards you should look for. Additional safety tips for your home are available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Child Safety Network.